We look to the British seaside for the sugared tones of our new Portobello Collection: sun, sea & sand are the inspiration for this nostalgic nod to the staycations of our childhoods. The fresh pastel colours of candyfloss, ice lollies & timeless British beach huts combine with airy weaves and specially selected summer yarns, making the Portobello Collection a perfect choice this summer.
There is nothing more reminiscent of British summertime than sandy sandwiches eaten next to pastel toned beach huts and faded fishing boats. This Collection is named after our local beach Portobello; a suburb of the Scottish capital famous for its Georgian & Victorian architecture, as well as its long sandy beaches and wonderfully faded aesthetic.
Any sunny summer day will see hundreds of people flock from the city and surrounding areas to make the most of the weather by paddling in the freezing waters, munching on candyfloss and 99s and maybe having a fish supper by the shore.
Our Middle Earth Collection wouldn’t be complete without a design dedicated to the great miners and craftsmen of the world of Tolkien: the Dwarves. Practical, skilled & proud warriors, the Dwarves immense architectural feats and forging skills, which were said to rival those of the Elves, are legendary.
This strong, new pattern is named Oakenshield, after the heirs to the title “King Under the Mountain” – a hereditary title conveyed on the Dwarf ruler who resides in the Lonely Mountain.
Thorin Oakenshield, in The HobbitTM, is the sole heir to this title. His grandfather Thrór was the ruler who lost the mountain dwelling, and the wealth within it, to Smaug in TA2770. Defeated, Thrór passed the title & the last of the Seven Dwarven Rings to his son: Thráin II, father of Thorin. Living a life of exile with his father, Thorin cultivated an unwavering sense of purpose which would eventually drive his quest to retake his family seat from the ferocious dragon, bringing Bilbo Baggins (and all of us) along with him for the adventure.
When considering a Rohan design, we wished to depict the culture and iconography of the Rohirrim, as described in The Lord of the Rings – A proud people with a strong monarchy, known for their skilled cavalry and horse training.
“I have been among them,” [said] Aragorn. “They are proud and wilful, but they are true-hearted, generous in thought and deed.”
The design took inspiration from tapestries, depicting historical tales, which were said to line the halls of Meduseld (the Hall of the King of Rohan), as well as descriptions of the banner of Rohan and Théoden’s shield:
The summer is fast approaching and our thoughts are turning to family holidays – whether you’re travelling abroad or staycation-ing, heading off to seek the sun or venturing somewhere cooler, the question of which carrier to take is always at the forefront of our minds! We have gathered together some tips from the team here at Oscha to help you decide what to take.
Slings are a great option for travelling families, making it easy to navigate busy airports & unfamiliar streets while making sure you see all the sights along with your little ones. With buggies a pain to take on trains and planes and not allowed at all at some attractions, a sling can be great for families who want to travel with their kids.
Wraps, ring slings and carriers all have their benefits, each can be more suited to certain types of activities, trips & climates: here is a run down of the pros and cons of each carrier type to help you choose which Oscha to pack for your holidays …
Oscha’s Sling Libraries and Consultant Scheme helps 100s of libraries around the world; offering discounts on slings to hire out and free promotional materials to spread the word about the benefits of babycarrying in their community. Cathy, general manager here at Oscha HQ, takes a look a what a Sling Library is and what they can offer parents.
Image courtesy of Close and Calm, Aberdeen
What is a Sling Library?
Babywearing is a practice that flourishes in the context of the real life social meet up. With most babywearing retailers operating online, and with the fabric feel and construction such an important element in considering a purchase, opportunities to touch and try out different fabric blends in one space are truly valued. The opportunity to try a variety of styles of carrier, with support from experienced or professional babywearers, allows the chance to explore and to practice with guidance and support. Of course there is also the added benefit of being in the company of other people who feel as passionately about carrying as you do!
We return to Middle-Earth for this much anticipated new design inspired by the world of Tolkien. Taking our Collection to new depths we embrace the darker side of Middle-Earth with a trip to Smaug’s Lonely Mountain lair …
Smaug The Magnificent
This new addition to our Middle Earth Collection is an original design based on the fearsome dragon, Smaug, who guards the wealth of the Dwarves of Erebor within the Lonely Mountain. Our designer, Mike, worked through some brilliantly terrifying designs before settling on this ferocious creature.
We return to Middle-Earth for this much anticipated new design inspired by the world of Tolkien. We start our journey at the gate to the abandoned Mines of Moria with our new Doors of Durin pattern.
The Doors of Durin Mellon
The Doors of Durin is one of the most enduring motifs from the world of The Lord of the Rings – a doorway to the Mines of Moria constructed during a collaboration between the Dwarves and the Elves of the Second Age – this design is loved by Tolkien fans around the world.
We have previously adapted this timeless design to fit our gorgeous Cashwool baby blankets and throws, however this new take on the Doors has been exclusively developed by the designers here at Oscha with wrapping and baby carrying in mind.
This month we focus on wool in our ongoing series of yarn blogs. We’ll join Vicki as she chases the sheep out of her garden, whilst paying homage to these amazing animals and investigating the wonderful baby wrapping properties of wool.
I’m having a wee bit of a problem with wild life in my garden; for a change it’s not rabbits eating my petunias, nor crows dive bombing the windows – the sheep have broken through from the neighbouring field and they think my shrubs are delicious. To be honest it’s surprising we haven’t had a visit sooner, for apparently Scotland has more sheep than people living upon our fair land.
The Elemental Collection has taken inspiration from traditional Scottish textiles for a series of new & unique patterns, continuing with this theme is our newest addition: Sonsie. Based on the rich tradition of knitting in the northern isles, this pattern harnesses comforting motifs to create a pattern which evokes memories of cosy, woollen jumpers and windswept Sunday walks in the Scottish countryside.
The ‘Fair Isle’ style is now synonymous with a myriad of knitting styles found around the world, but the Scottish island communities from which this style originates have been knitting with this specific set of motifs for generations. Read more about our Fair Isle inspiration here.
As the Elemental Collection celebrates the harsh diversity of the Scottish elements we take inspiration from the traditional textile techniques that have graced the protective layers worn by generations of families in Scotland for three intricate new designs and a gorgeous new Sea Island Cotton warp.
Lace and knitwear are inextricably linked with their Scottish origins, so when examining traditional textile techniques our gaze naturally fell on these heritage crafts. From this inspiration grew Croft, Sono and Lace: three new designs created for the Elemental Collection.